KNUTSFORD First Responders have received a ‘phenomenal’ sum for heart screening from Georgina Hodge at an emotional presentation at Bexton Primary School.

Mother-of-two Georgina has been overwhelmed by the total raised for the cardiac screening session in memory of her husband.

Mat Hodge died suddenly last September from a cardiac arrest aged 43, and Georgina was looking to raise money for a good cause in his memory.

The couple’s children, Jamon and Jonty, attend Bexton Primary, which joined forces with Georgina, Knutsford Hockey Club, where Mat was a member, and Knutsford Community First Responder Trust (KCFRT).

They hoped to raise several thousand pounds towards the cost of a heart screening day in 2020 for hockey club members.

However the huge outpouring of support for Georgina and her family has seen more than £11,700 raised for the screening session.

Georgina presented a cheque today (Friday) to Adrian Rees from the trust at Bexton Primary in front of the whole school.

The huge success of the fundraising will pay for the screening day, and provide enough money for an additional defibrillator in Knutsford.

Knutsford Guardian:

Georgina said: “A huge thanks for all the fantastic support the boys and I have received over the past few months in our aim to raise money for the KCFRT in memory of my husband.

“The kindness and generosity of parents, children and teachers has been overwhelming, and the final amount raised has been beyond all our expectations.

“Standing up on stage with the KCFRT this morning with the cheque in our hands made me feel so proud of the community we’re a part of, and I was amazed by the enthusiasm of the Bexton teachers and pupils alike.

“Our aim is to continue to fundraise for this worthwhile cause, and we already have lots of events planned with friends, family and the hockey club to achieve this.

“Our thanks go again to everyone for being so incredibly kind and generous, and for their continuous support. You’ve all been amazing.”

Georgina said the cheque presentation was doubly emotional as it was her son Jamon’s last day at Bexton before he starts at Knutsford Academy in September.

The fundraising included cake sales, a dads’ curry night, the sale of decorated wooden hearts, a sponsored run and Year 6 Enterprise.

This term pupils have been working with the trust to learn about how to have a healthy heart.

The First Responders have led assemblies and worked with each year group to teach them essential first aid skills.

Knutsford Guardian:

Georgina and Mat with their sons

As part of the project the school has worked with Knutsford Hockey Club to raise money to support a cardiac screening day in memory of Mat.

Deputy headteacher Jill Sach said: “The Bexton community have been incredible with their support.

“We ran a sponsored walk/run, where the children did as many laps of the trim trail in 30 minutes, which raised more than £5,000.

"Cake sales have raised over £2,000, the Year 6 Enterprise week raised £2,000, and with all our work we raised a total of £11,763.”

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Knutsford Academy is to host First Responder Trust cardiac screening sessions in 2020, on March 31 for Academy students and on April 25 for Knutsford Hockey Club members.

A third screening day will take place at Knutsford Methodist Church for the public on September 26, 2020.

Trust chairman Sal Thompson said she was amazed by the ‘magnificent’ total raised by the school, describing the support from the staff as ‘absolutely fantastic’.

The cheque presentation was attended by Trevor and Heather Lawrence from the trust, Georgina’s sister Janna Caley and Jonny Price, first team captain at Knutsford Hockey Club, who praised the ‘amazing’ support of the Bexton community.